|

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Dealing with Defiance

Elementary School Expert Advice from Barbara Potts

Q: My son gives me such a hard time about doing everything: going to school, playing baseball, writing or coloring with me. It's very frustrating and exhausting. Do you have any suggestions?

A: You don't indicate your son's age, but it sounds like he's learned how to push your buttons. Be sure to choose your battles with him. You can't give in on school, but writing and coloring are issues that you can let him win.

Try to be very matter-of-fact with your son and don't get involved in arguments with him. In the mornings let him know how much time he has before he needs to leave ("You have 15 minutes ... You have 10 minutes ...") and then walk away. Many children see arguing with parents as fun, and when you take away that argument the game loses interest.

If the writing or coloring is important (if it's part of your son's homework, for example) focus on the positive with him. Let him know that writing with you for 15 minutes can earn a reward such as an extra bedtime story or a walk around the block just with you.

More on: Expert Advice

Barbara Potts has worked as an elementary school counselor for many years. She has a BA in psychology from Wake Forest University, and an M.Ed. in Guidance and Counseling from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

highlights

Join BIC on our mission to save handwriting and Fight For Your Write! Writing helps kids become better readers, boosts their confidence and sparks their creativity. Visit BICFightForYourWrite.com to sign our petition to save handwriting!

7 Tips for Reading Aloud to Babies & Toddlers
The AAP advises reading aloud to babies and toddlers because it boosts brain power and has many other benefits. Get some tips for making the most of story time with your tot!

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

How to Survive Summer Boredom
When the kids are home all day, every day, summer boredom strikes hard and fast. Learn the best summer boredom busters and tips for surviving until September.

12 Birthday Party Favors that Won't Get Thrown Away
The next time you're planning a birthday, forgo the penny candy and cheap toys. Send your guests home with one of these fun and creative party favor ideas!